Colts’ Tony Dungy Comes to Moss’ Defense

Colts’ Dungy comes to Moss’ defense (FOX Sports)

Randy Moss bought himself another week under the microscope by pretending to pull down his pants and moon the crowd following a late touchdown catch in Sunday’s 31-17 wild-card win over the Packers. But while fans and commentators raged about the inappropriateness of Moss’ act, Colts coach Tony Dungy came to Moss’ defense. While appearing on Fox Sports Radio’s Morning Extravaganza with Van Earl Wright, Dungy said he could understand what might have prompted Moss’ actions. “I will say one thing about Moss … probably no one in the country can appreciate what is behind that,” Dungy said. “What happens — and if you play in that division, which I did for a long time, you know — when you leave the parking lot in Green Bay that’s kind of a tradition their fans have. They stand next to the fence as the buses go out and they moon the buses.

“Randy has had about six or seven years of those guys mooning him as he’s left after a loss and I think that was his way of saying, ‘OK, appreciate the fun, you guys had your fun, here’s a little shout back at you.’ That’s what that was all about.”

I heard this on former Georgetown coach John Thompson’s show driving home this afternoon but hadn’t found a link before now. This does put the Moss incident into a different context. While a fine is still warranted, given NFL rules, I don’t believe a suspension would be warranted under these circumstances.

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James Joyner
About James Joyner
James Joyner is Professor and Department Head of Security Studies at Marine Corps University's Command and Staff College. He's a former Army officer and Desert Storm veteran. Views expressed here are his own. Follow James on Twitter @DrJJoyner.


  1. Interesting information, but it no way excuses Moss’s action and if that’s what Tony Dungy was trying to do then I am quite surprised. Or maybe Tony’s just trying to position himself to get Randy Moss when the fire sale starts.

  2. Ian says:

    I saw this today on the NFL channel.

    Randy Moss has been in trouble in the past, and this time he deserves a major fine. He has been fined $1,000 and $25000 in the past, also he was assigned to anger management. This time he needs a good $50000+ fine.

    But I agree, he shouldn’t be suspended.

  3. M. Murcek says:

    The Green Bay fans mooning the team busses is the fact that wrecks the whole story.

  4. Dave says:

    James, it takes a big man to admit he was mistaken.

    For my part, I don’t understand what the fuss is all about. He did not actually moon anyone. It may have been ill-advised or low class, but Joe Buck’s “despicable” seemed incoherent.

    The real story is that Randy caught an improbable TD on a bad ankle after selling the slant.

  5. delta dave says:

    I keep hearing all the sports radio jocks tsk tsk about Randy Moss and all the callers expressing their opinion of the appropriateness of his actions and possible penalty, but I haven’t heard anything from an actual Viking fan.

    I am a Viking fan. I was a kid in Fargo ND when the Vikings were born. I grew up in the era of Bud Grant and the Purple People defense. It was a fun and exciting time to be identified as a “Viking” (except the bubble always burst at Super Bowl time, but there was always next year.)

    But I digress…so what is different today? This morning I put my weathered Viking hat, and my ole Viking shirt into a mailer and sent it off to Mike Tice. You see, its gotten to the point where I am between embarrassed and ashamed to be identified as a Viking. Surely not a proud Viking fan anymore. In fact, I don’t want to be associated, nor do I want my grandson to be associated with anything “Viking”…. its come to stand for people who don’t alway try. it stands for people who only care about themselves. it stands for people who make obscene jestures in public.

    Something changed in the Viking constitution when they left the outdoors of Metropolitian Stadium and moved inside to the cozy warmth of Hurbret Humphrey Stadium. They are no longer an ideal. They are no longer anything I want to emulate.

    I miss my Vikings of old. I don’t know the modern day Vikings. You all can have them.

  6. Ian says:

    Agreed with dave. I wish that I was old enough to expierence my home team (I live in Baltimore) Colts, before they moved. When football turned into money and trading, that is what started the ruination of it. All these football stars live in palaces now, and not anywhere near their fans. 40-50 years (and beyond that) players lived in the same neighborhood and type of house as their fans.